Item Summoning (Spell Saturday #11) (tumblr repost)

This is a general summoning spell I wrote about, oh, fifteen years ago. I wrote it down on notebook paper at school, used it a few times, then forgot about it when transferring spells over to my then-new grimoire. Due to this ask, I searched about and found it again.

It’s a great little spell that can be used anything from summoning a lost item to bringing a new item towards you.

Item Summoning by This Crooked Crown

Think of the exact item you want. For example, if you want a book, remember the author’s name, the book title, and the cover art. Now say the following while throwing out energy and magic into the world.

“I summon you [item]

Come to my side

Over distances far and wide, 

find me and become mine.”

Pull the energy towards you, like dragging the item into your arms.

That’s it! It’s really simple and yet works super well, as Hellboundwitch can attest.

Enjoy your holidays and happy casting!

Originally posted on tumblr. Original spell written by This Crooked Crown.

Ouija Boards 101 or “Are Ouija Boards Dangerous?”

Every couple of months I get this question “are Ouija boards dangerous?”. The answer, in short, is no. Not any more than any other tool at least. Then I get a whole slue of questions on how to use a Ouija board safely or properly. If you’ve ever asked those questions yourself, this is the post for you.

I use Ouija boards on occasion. I find they’re tools and that they are no more dangerous than anything else and like anything else they may become dangerous when used improperly or foolishly.

Ouija boards were originally designed as a toy, a game. (Not that something being a game originally means anything. Tarot it based off the game tarrochi after all.) And I find that the excessive fear of Ouija comes from the media or passed along stories rather than first hand accounts. And I do mean fear. People are afraid of these things which seems silly as most buy them in the toy section of Wal-Mart. I’ve come into possession of several Ouija boards simply by the previous owners being too scared of the boards and worried that they couldn’t get rid of it properly or that it wouldn’t burn or would come back if thrown away. (And these are learned individuals in the science and medical field). It’s fear-mongering, pushed by people who prefer to see tools as evil or to continue to parrot information without thinking on what that tool could mean or actually do. I often find people who say such things have never even touched a Ouija board in their life so I question their information and fear or demonizing of something they’ve never used or touched.

Honestly though. What the fuck makes people think Ouija boards are dangerous? What? Do you think Hasbro has spirits locked in a room somewhere that influenced the creation? Or they sandwich the spirits in between the paper and the cardboard?

Any tool can be used to contact a spirit. Any tool has the danger of being used to contact a “negative” or “bad” spirit. Any tool.

The whole idea that the board can be possessed by a spirit is legitimate, as spirits can possess things, but why bother with a piece of cardboard instead of say, a doll which had the capability to be mobile? I think the fear of Ouija stems from the very point of the board – to pass messages along from the spirit world. And to that I have to ask why anyone who claims or wants to work with spirits would fear such a thing. Isn’t that the point? If you get guidance from a spirit or deity, this is the exact same thing. The only difference is that there is no visual representation for you to converse with – which may actually work in your favor because there is no reason a spirit can’t fool your eyes and appear as something else, as this is traditionally an ability many spirits possess in folklore and mythology.

Realistically speaking, pendulums are more dangerous than Ouija boards. One method of using pendulums is to have spirits influence the pendulum and follow where that leads (if using it as a searching device) which is infinitely more dangerous than sitting in your living room with another person and sliding a plachette across a piece of cardboard. The implied information here is that a spirit would be more powerful to physically push or influence the pendulum (or the human hand holding the pendulum) than one influencing two humans to push the plachette around (and humans are, as science has proven, incredibly susceptible to suggestion).

It the end it comes to this: Ouija boards are misunderstood and demonized for truly bewildering and contrary reasons that makes me instantly suspect the speaker, especially if said speaker claims to or has worked with or is working with spirits. Claims that the boards aren’t useful in witchcraft, are extraordinarily dangerous, or evil are often employed by the uneducated or fearmongers.

Now that we have that covered, let’s move onto actually using an Ouija board!

Ouija boards spells out things by have a plachette (pointer) move around the letters. Each person participating should lay a hand or at least a finger on the plachette and focus during the moment the question is being asked on the question itself. In theory, the plachette spells out the answers to the questions.

Make no mistake: the plachette is moved around by people. Each person slightly moves the plachette around without noticing and another person responds. It’s OK to totally admit this. In fact, I find going into the procedure knowing that actually helps determine whether someone’s just messing around or if they’re channeling something. It also helps because it can calm you down when you start to get worked up (because groups of people can get worked up very easily when scared or excited.) Now, the question that should be asked is this: are they moving the plachette that way because a spirit suggests it or they intuitively know the answer? That’s something you’ll have to determine for yourself.

Here’s some tips to get the best enjoyment out of your Ouija board session:

Take breaks often. A lot of getting spooked happens when people build on experiences – it all rolls together and excitement builds to a point that anything’s possible. It especially happens when using it with other people and I believe is related to mob mentality – which creates a us vs them dichotomy, paranoia, and is often aggressive (which will chase away milder spirits). Taking breaks gives you a moment to pause and consider what’s happened before starting up again.

Eat and drink something but avoid excessive amounts of refined sugar, caffeine, alcohol, or stimulating drugs as these substances can create a sense of paranoia and in extreme amounts, hallucinations. Foods like bread and pasta are good but whatever works best for you is good.

Keep notes and write down information and responses given. Go back through those notes and repeat those same questions at a later date to help verification. Asking questions where you think you already know the answer will help from getting too excited because nothing new’s been added.

Atmosphere is fun and all but can create a sense of false importance of a situation. So lighting the candles and holding session in a darkened room may be part of your process but shake it up sometimes if you feel like that might be contributing to getting spooked.

Put some music on. I’d recommend music without lyrics as lyrics may be able to subconsciously influence your answers and create interference.

Putting out an offering, even just a glass of water, may add a sobering effect to your sessions but that depends on your particular perspective. An offering is polite though so it may attract more of whom you’re looking to speak to.

Time your sessions. If something goes on for a long time, it can build until you’re spooked out. Maybe only ask five questions at a time or ask questions for twenty minutes then take a break.

To end a session, go ahead and thank anyone that showed up (both humans and spirits alike), even if some scary stuff happened. It’s only polite. You may wish to cleanse the room and check protection wards afterward.

As mentioned above, eat something after the session and chat among yourself. Give everyone time to calm down before they go home or whatever. Again, it reduces the fear factor.

There you go! A quick 101 on ouija boards. Have fun!

This post is based on these tumblr posts here, here, and here.

How to Make Your Home More Inviting For Spirits

A lot of people work hard to make their home nice, safe, and spirit-free. Others prefer a little incorporeal company.

Spirit shenanigans aren’t uncommon in my household. Just earlier today I watched an indoor wind chime twist around, jangle loudly, and physical move for half a minute. the wind chime closer to the window and less than a foot away from the moving wind chime didn’t move a bit. I happen to be across the room at the time putting up my hair, standing next to my sleeping cat. Nothing I could see moved or touched it. It’s weird. I’m not saying it was a spirit but I’m not ruling it out either, you know? These kinds of events are pretty common in my household. In fact, you’ll probably run into a spirit just as often as you’d run into a visiting friend around here.

So how can you invite spirits around your own home?

First you need to consider your location. I live between two crossroads, at the top of a hill, down the street of a swamp, less than a mile from the ocean and a river, and behind a funeral home (in fact, my street’s technically part of a corpse road). My house is naturally attractive to spirits because of this. In fact, when we moved in, we had to kick spirits out because they weren’t willing to share. We get a lot of water and murky spirits here due to our location and a lot human dead. 90% of our visitors are transient and we never see them again. This is linked to our location. If you live on a street with a lot of flourishing gardens you’re more likely to run across fae than water spirits. If you live by the sea you’re going to see a lot more water spirits than anything else.

Trying to cater to your local spirits may be a good idea: take fallen branches from the yard and fashion them into an offering – hang it on the wall or leave it by an offering space if that’s what you’re doing. Otherwise, I just make wind chimes out of the fallen branches and leave them in the yard. I also tend to leave out animal-safe food offering such as sugar-free bread and purified water.

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The storm clouds tonight are lovely.

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Next you need to decide what spirits best suit you. Our most prominent spirits, outside of the human dead, are goblins. They’re mischievous and tend to break shit for the fun of it. Most folks don’t invite them into their homes because they cause more trouble than anything else. I find them funny and honest, in a way. They’re intentions are typically selfish and I get that. We also like the transient spirits that come and go as that also suits our family’s personality. We’re something like a roadside inn. You don’t need to know what spirit you want in the home but what temperament is best. It’s not unlike trying to find a new housemate except that the questions revolve less around “do you smoke?” and more of “do you break shit just for the giggles?”

Once you decide what kind of spirits you’re looking at, do research. If you’re looking for a specific spirit, leave out offerings they would like. If you’re looking for just more spirits in general, read up on people’s accounts of living with spirits. It’s not always what it’s cracked up to be and you may find yourself wishing otherwise. (For example, when we first moved in here there was a spirit that would watch me shower and another that lived under the stairs and would turn the light on and off at will, even if no one used the stairs that day. Or, a few Christmases ago the spirit that set off the fire alarms four times, including at five a.m. That particular spirit refused to stop until it was given an offering. I threw it’s ass to the curb.)

This is also a good time to start catering your protection wards and spells to your new purpose. If you want to let in fae, then you’re going to have to make sure that your protection doesn’t hurt them or kick them out.

Before you do any serious inviting, be sure you can kick out whatever you’re inviting in. Sometimes, spirits just become assholes. Pick out a good binding and/or banishing spell ahead of time and be sure to have cleansing materials on hand.

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Burn baby burn

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Set ground rules. I have a few rules that each spirit is told upon entering the house. Generally, they seem to know ahead of time so maybe other spirits tell them but sometimes I need to make it a point. My rules are for them to stay out of the bedrooms, generally speaking, especially when we sleep and the bathrooms when they’re in use. Another is to leave the cats alone. The third is to not manipulate electronics (in case they break something) and the fourth is for them to leave my mother alone. Be firm with these rules and don’t be afraid to break out the cleansing and banishing materials if the rules are broken. They need to know that you’re serious and not playing around. I’ve even had spirits banished and come back at a later day, promising not to do whatever they did wrong previously again.

Offerings are nice but not always necessary. In fact, you may wish to make sure they aren’t a daily thing. This is where research comes in handy. A brownie may demand a gift every day in exchange for keeping the house running smoothly and a spirit guardian spirit may require one on specific occasions. Generally speaking it’s not good to spoil them too much. If you give offerings to the neighborhood spirits every week for two months, they’re going to be pissed when you don’t do it in that third month – and they may take it out on you. Re-negotiations may need to take place to remedy that situation. It’s better to not get into that sort of situation to begin with. I give offerings on specific days or events – Thanksgiving they get turkey soup, New Year’s Eve they get wine. If I spend the day baking, I give a bit of whatever to them. Outside of that, it’s sporadic and that works best for me and them. I have a few spots in the yard I leave offerings but I’ve recently installed a little house-shaped shadowbox for permanent offerings  by a window and I have a dish I leave by my coffee maker for the household spirits like brownies.

Most spirits like shiny things, so leaving a small selection of shiny objects like coins, rough crystals, bits of broken chains, etc may attract spirits. Avoid warding measures like knives, scissors, and nails in windowsills unless you want that room to be banned for them.

Make a formal offer. This may be as simple as trancing or meditating in your room and telling them to enter, taking a walk in a park, or puttering about the yard. I tend to step into the middle of our largest crossroad and make the offer. This usually ends up being “hey, if you want to swing in and say hi, go for it” and that’s about as formal as I get.

Having a space for household spirits is somewhat ideal. This may be the hall closet or, in my case, the boiler room. A lesser used room is typically ideal, although they may take up residence in the basement, ceilings, attics, and floor. A friend of mine had a spirit take residence in their unused chimney and I have several spirit houses dedicated for this exact purpose. This isn’t necessary however and in fact may be preferred that they’re more nomadic in the space.

It takes time, so keep that in mind. Spirits have their own minds, agendas, cultures, personalities, and backgrounds. It may take a while for certain spirits to warm up to you. You might need to readjust and reassess if things aren’t going the way you want them to. You can call up or summon spirits to speed up the process but you’ll want to be sure they’re the kind of spirit you want to hang around.

Keep records. I say this often about a lot of things but I recommend keeping a record of weird happenings if you’re attempting to attract spirits. This way you can track patterns that might be spirits communicating. If you have a busy household, it can even be fun for kids and guests to write down what they’re experiencing in a book.

I think that’s a good place to start. Generally, give it time and be friendly!

This post was adapted and based off of an ask from tumblr here.

Let’s talk servitors

I have a wide variety of spirits and beings that attend to me. I don’t work with them or for them. They work for me. Some run messages and collect gossip, others protect various things, a few have specific roles, and others still run business for me on the Other Side while I’m away. I have a small army of folks working for me. In trade for their services, I grant them various things according to our arrangements and, most importantly, protection.

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Reading ♡ Halloween Oracle

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I’m gathering from what I’ve seen on the internet this is somewhat unusual. Frankly, on the other side I have a huge tract of territory and people inside that territory. Mostly, they do their thing and keep what few laws I have and I leave them alone. They need help I help them. They don’t then I don’t. Simple.

Now, I tend to group things together. All spirits are spirits. They could also be demons, fae, ghosts, local deities, etc but I call them a spirit unless they have a specific title they want me to use. Most don’t bother defining themselves so I don’t bother defining them. I might have suspicions on “what they are” (whatever that means) but it doesn’t usually factor into anything for me.

Yes, all this is important for this discussion.

I also group all servitors, constructs, thoughtforms, egregores, and even some familiars together. If they are a being created by a person, they get dumped into this category. I actually use thoughtform, egregore, construct, and servitor interchangeably. But I also personally define them as separate things. Thoughtforms, for example, are creatures made of thought, usually for specific purposes. Egregore is a group thoughtform. Servitor is a created creature that serves while a construct is just a created creature without that desire to serve built in. Thoughtforms and egregores are purely non-corporeal and totally reside in the realm outside the physical (although they may exist in this physical realm.) Servitors may, but not always, be connected to an object or have a body whereas constructs, for me, will always have a body it cannot go far from.

These beings can evolve or go from one title to another. A construct can develop into a servitor and extend itself from its body far more than it should. A thoughtform or egregore can become servitor or construct. It’s all really fluid.

For example, I may make a construct for a spell. I might put together a clay poppet or something and place it at a crossroad to become a guardian of that place. I might make a construct to ruin someone’s life, literally creating a spirit who will torment a person. (Hey, I warned you all I’m not a nice person.) I might make a construct to protect someone.

Now I have a construct that is attached to some jewelry. I developed it so it would eventually work as a weapon and, with any luck, activate itself if I was in danger and didn’t know it or was unconscious. At first, I needed to be aware of its existence and truly activate it to get it to work. Over the last year or so, it has slowly but surely become more active, more self-aware, and more self-sufficient. It can now extend itself out of the body and home and it can be about a hundred feet from its body with no trouble so long as it remains on my body. I’m thinking that it could now ride storms if we had such storms at the moment.

Anyway, it has begun to develop its skills and has branched out from its original purpose to new ones – which is super awesome and exactly what I want. I’m totally OK with my servitors becoming self aware and eventually leaving my service if it so wants. Most people who work with servitors don’t like that because 1) that servitors know all your shit 2) it can become unruly and destructive if not properly cared for or malformed.

So why a servitor? It depends on the person themselves. I like having a servitor to watch my back. Often, my servitors remember shit way better than me and can remind me of shit I need to do. It’s companionship and someone to talk to. My servitors also are required to have some sort of attack. I like them to be able to defend themselves and me if necessary. If they are body-less and more free-moving thoughtforms, I send them on missions for certain things. To check the status of this herb in the wild or to find someone to serve my needs for something. They’re useful as shit – if you’re willing to do the work. Much like a pet or child, you have to train them, care for them properly, or they can become very destructive and unruly. And it really, truly sucks having to destroy what you’ve created like that.

It’s a pretty classic magician sort of thing. Familiars work similarly but I tend to find that familiars are spirits that find you not beings you create. Do you need one? Hell no. You don’t need a guide, familiar, servitor, or any damn thing if you don’t want it. It is a being that is useful but takes a lot of time and energy to make and create and if you don’t consistently care for it and forget it (which is super fucking common) terrible things like hauntings and nightmares can occur.

How to Make a Poppet

Now, I’m going to be upfront:

  • This post was written during the process of making a poppet for cursing. While this post can be used for ANY poppet for ANY purpose.
  • Is image heavy; many of the photos are shaky. This is common when I photograph my spell work. I don’t know why but I have my suspicions.
  • Features photographs of charged ingredients, sigils, and spells.
  • Talks about curses
  • Features a mini how-to break glass safely.
  • This is an attempt to be traditionally neutral. I do things different than others and thus my own methods bleed through. Remember to work within and adapt to your own cultural background, paradigm, and practice.
  • Trigger warnings: blood, glass, curses, Gov. Rick Perry, poppets, sigils, spells, energy, charged items, etc. I’m sure there are others I’m missing but there you go.

This is a follow along using simple ingredients. It starts with how to make the poppet, talks about filling it, making the face and personalizing it, and then finishing it up. Away we go.

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